Brazilian police on Thursday broke up a criminal organization that distributed drugs and guns from neighboring Paraguay to gangs operating in the slums of Rio de Janeiro.
The group, which had apparently been operating for two years, had bases in the border towns of Pedro Juan Caballero, Paraguay, and Ponta Pora, Brazil, as well as in Catanduva, Sao Paulo state, where they stored the material prior to shipping it to Rio de Janeiro.
Operation Sao Domingos involved some 100 Federal Police in the states of Sao Paulo, Mato Grosso do Sul and Rio de Janeiro, who were given orders to arrest 24 people and raid 24 residences and sites used by the band.
The Federal Police said in a communique that since the start of the investigation 10 months ago a total of 21 people had been arrested for alleged links with the organization and 6.45 tons of marijuana, 436 kilos of cocaine, four pistols, a shotgun and 360 rounds of rifle ammunition had been seized.
The investigation of the group began in May 2013 when police arrested a couple who were transporting 52 kilos of cocaine between Ponta Pora and Catanduva.